West Side Health Care District sees surge in COVID cases

Midway Driller Editor dkeeler@taftmidwaydriller.com @midwaydriller
West Side Health Care District

The West Side Health Care District is feeling the effects of the rise in COVID-19, said Executive Director Ryan Shultz.

The patient count at the district's West Side Family Health Care Clinic is up significantly since mid summer and more and more people are coming in for drive-through tests.

"I'd say generally our patient volumes are way up right now. They've been increasing since the end of July."

The rise in patients at the clinic coincides with a major increase in cases reported in western Kern County by the Kern County Health Department.

Shultz said it's similar to the summer of 2020 when people came in with symptoms including elevated fever, cough and fatigue.

However he cautioned that there is also another flu bug circulating in the community, so some of the increase may not be related to COVID.

The drive-through test site at the clinic is a lot busier that in was just a couple of months ago.

"On average we are doing 25 to 35 drive-up tests. That is up significantly from June and July when we were doing just two or three tests per day."

Shultz said many of the people who come to get tested take advantage of the rapid testing for possible exposure at work or at school.